Under Rock and Stone
October 26 – December 16th, 2012
Opening reception: Friday, October 26, 6–8PM
Glen Baldridge’s work holds a sense of the sardonic, and a reverence and curiosity for the “outside.” His subject matter often redefines the perception of the abject, while his technical grounding and background in printmaking keeps an eye towards an artistic subculture rooted in virtuosic print and papermaking methodologies.
His fourth solo show with Klaus von Nichtssagend, “Under Rock and Stone,” engages in themes of suburban alienation, dissolution of counterculture, and how the forest primeval relates to the American subconsciousness.
An installation of wooden clapboard siding greets visitors at the entrance to the gallery space. Where a sconce or motion light might normally illuminate the wall at night, Baldridge’s tongue-in-cheek sculptural light work mischievously lights the way.
Baldridge furthers his unique synthesis of photography, drawing, and printmaking with a series of pictures derived from images shot at night in rural New England with a game camera, which is automatically triggered by wind, insects, and otherwise unseen forces of the night. The subsequent photos are screenprinted onto sheets of graphite-covered watercolored paper. The graphite is erased away to reveal the image amid the yellow-green painted watercolor ground, evoking night vision and other haunting glows.
The woods here, devoid of human presence, stand in as places peripheral and out of bounds, bespeaking the early settlers’ fears of the wilderness, both natural and otherwise—but also of drug-addled teenagers stumbling through a dark place devoid of parental supervision.
Hanging below the skylight of the gallery is an image of a tie-dyed t-shirt, fabricated from pigmented hand-made paper. The piece appears to have smashed through the skylight like a fallen youth who flew too close to the stars; its suspension in space causes it to double as a sundial and casting a shadow in motion over the gallery throughout the day, at times landing on a small honey bear sitting high on a shelf. Close inspection reveals it to be a slip-cast porcelain waterpipe, a hardened symbol of an icon of an American counterculture.
Glen Baldridge was born in Great Falls, Montana and graduated from the Rhode Island School of Design in 1999. He currently lives and works in Brooklyn, NY. His work is held in many public and private collections including the Museum of Modern Art, The Metropolitan Museum of Art, the Whitney Museum of American Art, the New York Public Library, the Yale University Art Gallery, and the RISD Museum. Baldridge is co-owner and founder of Forth Estate Editions.